NITI Aayog

Inviting applications for Youth Co:Lab India 2021

Focus area for innovative solutions this year is ‘Climate Action and Accelerating Green Recovery’

Application deadline - 22 September 2021

Posted On: 15 SEP 2021 8:15PM by PIB Delhi

Youth Co:Lab India 2021 is inviting applications from young innovators and entrepreneurs between the age of 18 to 29 years in the focus areas of Circular Economy, Sustainable Transportation, Sustainable Tourism and Sustainable Food Tech. The deadline for the call for applications is 22 September 2021. More information on the applications, frequently asked questions, themes etc. can be found here.

Youth Co:Lab positions young people front and center in order to solve the region’s most pressing challenges. Co-created in 2017 by United Nations Development Programme and Citi Foundation, it aims to establish a common agenda for countries in the Asia-Pacific region to empower and invest in youth, so that they can accelerate the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through leadership, social innovation and entrepreneurship. It is being implemented in 25 countries and territories across Asia Pacific.

In India, Youth Co:Lab has been launched by UNDP, in collaboration with Atal Innovation Mission, NITI Aayog in 2019. Since then, three editions of Youth Co:Lab, including youth social innovation challenges, supporting enterprises, and youth focused dialogues have been jointly implemented.

Cognizant of the imminent climate crisis and its adverse effects, UNDP and Atal Innovation Mission have come together through Youth Co:Lab to call on young innovators with disruptive and scalable solutions to take up the mantle of driving climate action.

In his keynote address in a conversation on youth led-innovation for climate action, Dr. Chintan Vaishnav, MD Atal Innovation Mission said “The climate crisis is the most important generational challenge in front of young people and thankfully, they are the most suited to solve this as they start with possibilities and not with constraints. History has shown time and again that large opportunities were harnessed by people with an entrepreneurial spirit. I invite all of our young innovators and entrepreneurs to participate in this incredible opportunity to unleash their creativity and build their solutions through the Youth Co:Lab.“

This was echoed by Mr. Amit Kumar, Head, Inclusive Growth, UNDP India, “Indeed, youth of today are driving change, particularly in climate action. Climate change is here and its impact is predicted to worsen and intensify over time. We have seen how young people are no longer passive or mere beneficiaires of development but are agents of progress. They are vocal, collaborative and most importantly innovative, creating new disruptive yet scalable solutions.  Through Youth Co:Lab, UNDP and AIM have joined hands to identify, encourage and support such youth innovators working to combat the climate crisis in India.”

From the applications, the best 40 teams based on innovation in idea, business viability, sustainability and scalability will be selected to participate in the three-month National Springboard Programme, implemented in partnership with the Climate Collective and Kerala Startup Mission. The teams will be provided with mentorship, training and networking support. The initiative will also bring in key stakeholders on climate and youth entrepreneurship to support young startups in the form of a multi stakeholder alliance and the National Innovation Challenge and Dialogue. The National Innovation Challenge will select the best 2 teams to represent India at the Regional Springboard Programme as well as the Youth Co:Lab Regional Summit 2022.

Please refer to the for more information on the 2021 summit and winner details. Follow the online conversation on social media by using the hashtags #YouthColabIndia, #AimToInnovate and by following @NITIAayog, @UNDP_India and @YouthCoLab.

Atal Innovation Mission is a flagship initiative set up by the National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog to promote innovation and entrepreneurship in the country. Its objective is to create a facilitating environment for the transformation of ideas into innovative and impactful solutions at schools, universities, research institutions, MSME and industry levels across the country. Please visit for more information.

UNDP India
UNDP works across 170 countries and territories to eradicate poverty while protecting the planet. We help countries develop strong policies, skills, partnerships, and institutions so they can sustain their progress. UNDP has worked in India since 1951 in almost all areas of human development, from systems strengthening to inclusive growth and sustainable livelihoods, as well as sustainable energy, environment, and resilience. UNDP’s programmes continue to integrate a global vision for catalytic change with India’s national priorities. With over 30 projects on the ground in almost every state, today, it works to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by transforming traditional models to do development differently.
Please visit for more information. 



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